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Wife is accused of being a 'Karen' for complaining about kid's Valentine's Day party. AITA?

Wife is accused of being a 'Karen' for complaining about kid's Valentine's Day party. AITA?

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"AITA for calling my wife a 'Karen' for complaining about our daughter’s class Valentine’s party being canceled?"

My daughter is in third grade. She's a really good kid but happens to be in a really rough class with a ton of behavior issues and disrespect. I have a very favorable impression of her teacher and she appears to have good management skills; it just seems to be a bad group.

On Friday the 12th a few weeks ago (the Friday before Martin Luther King Day and the 3 day weekend), my daughter's teacher tried to read the class a story about the life of MLK on the carpet at the very end of the day. Just after school ended that day, she made a very long and unhappy post on the platform teachers use to communicate with parents at our school.

She said the class's behavior she experienced while trying to read the story was by far the worst behavior she has ever encountered in over a decade of teaching. She went on about how unbelievably disrespectful, rude, disinterested and off-task the students were.

She said she had to send multiple people to the office, that she had to stop the story midway through since the kids were being so rude and have everyone put their heads down at their desks with the lights off. Lots of kids still continued to make noise, giggle, whisper, and she had to call a staff member from the office to come to the classroom.

I asked my daughter about it and she gave additional details. One boy got sent to the office for making a very disrespectful joke about MLK's death, another boy got sent because he got up and did a weird dance while she was reading and wouldn't stop, and another boy got sent outside for blowing into his elbow and making a huge fart sound. She said she didn't act up (which her teacher confirmed when my wife talked to her) but that most other kids were talking, making noise and being rude as well.

The following week her teacher announced some whole-class consequences. 1) The whole class spent both their recesses on "the wall" the Tuesday they returned. The 3 boys I talked about earlier were on whole week.

2) They had extra HW assignments each night that week on MLK that added about 15 extra minutes of HW per night. 3) The class Valentine's Day party, where the kids design Valentine boxes and have a party exchanging gifts, eating candy and listening to music is canceled. She said during the time when the other classes have their party they'll be having a Social Studies test.

My daughter was really upset about the party being canceled, and has been complaining that it's unfair because she didn't act up. My wife agrees, and these past couple weeks has been complaining a lot about her teacher (which I'd never heard her do previously).

Yesterday she said something about wanting to complain to the principal, and I told her she sounded like a Karen. I said I applaud her teacher for not taking crap and giving the kids some real consequences, and said "life isn't always fair, deal with it." This made her mad. AITA?

Here's what top commenters had to say about this one:

Ughaboomer said:

Maybe your daughter should be in a different classroom? If disturbances are on a regular basis, it will start to affect her learning.

Crimson_red123 said:

NTA, I respect your teacher for doing that, instead of your wife complaining, why not take your daughter out for a family day to reward your daughter for her good behavior, maybe lunch, the park or even shopping at a local candy store? I'm sure your wife and daughter would agree to have a fun day, this way it's a win-win for everybody.

ghettoblaster78 said:

NTA. Something about rewarding her normal behavior doesn’t sit well with me. She didn’t act especially good, she acted how she was supposed to. I’m with dad here—life isn’t fair and there are consequences. Good on the teacher for doing this. This also shows those that misbehaved that they ruined this for everybody.

There’s also beneficial peer pressure that can come from this—that other kids will tell them to knock it off. I think mom needs to let this go. This is a good teacher that’s not putting up with disrespect and taking the daughter out seems like entitlement.

-Alpharius- said:

Collective punishment of kids will make them all act up. Trust me, I taught for years and it doesn't work. You think it does but the good ones become resentful and check out. The bad ones, well they have homelife that is teaching them these things in the first place.

Whose_my_daddy said:

YTA The teacher is, too. Punishing kids a whole month out is ridiculous and any early childhood education teacher would know this. Discipline must be immediate to keep its effect. Putting them on the wall, extra focused homework on Dr. King, are both good punishments.

But the party is not. I’d be calling if I was your wife, too. This class will be a class with a reputation with this classroom management style. The kids who behave may as well act up, they’re going to be punished anyway.

MikkiTh said:

ESH Except your daughter and the other kids who did follow the rules only to get punished anyway. Group punishments are a great way to teach kids who do behave that good behavior is useless. This is especially true when it comes to a punishment a month later.

Your wife and you should be having a conversation with the principal because this doesn't sound like a teacher with great classroom management skills, this sounds like someone who is burnt out and ill prepared to remember exactly what to expect from 8 year olds.

The opinions were certainly divided here, but most people were on OP's wife's side. What's your advice for these parents?

Sources: Reddit
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